Wednesday 7 December 2016

Jamie Oliver baffled at criticism for letting daughters see brother's birth

Published 02/12/2016 | 00:06

Jamie and Jools Oliver with baby River Rocket
Jamie and Jools Oliver with baby River Rocket

Jamie Oliver has said he does not understand the controversy around his two eldest daughters watching the birth of his youngest child.

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The celebrity chef announced earlier this year that Poppy Honey, 14, and Daisy Boo, 13, watched his wife Jools deliver their brother River Rocket, with Poppy cutting the umbilical cord.

The move was praised by some, while critics said a delivery room is no place for a child.

However, Oliver said he was surprised that it was seen as a controversial move.

He told Good Housekeeping: " It's only controversial to really strange people! Most of the world has home births, and different countries have different habits.

"It was an idea from mum and the kids, and we gave it lots of thought. As soon as the baby was out and safe, we got the nod - Poppy cut the umbilical cord!

"To see my two teenagers watch their mum was extraordinary. It was the right age for them, the right scenario for us, and I witnessed their initial raw emotion as the little one was handed to them.

"I know they respect their mum now even more than they already did. It was an amazing show of strength."

Oliver also revealed the fear he feels for the restaurant industry following the vote for Brexit.

He said: " If it affects me, it will affect every restaurant and every farm and everyone in the food industry, which is the biggest industry on the planet, and the Government will not have that.

"We are constantly short-staffed. We haven't got queues of people wanting jobs. We haven't got enough chefs. There aren't enough going through college. Everyone wants staff.

"It's an impossibility that Britain can function without European staff. End of.

"As far as I'm told by the Government, it is going to be law that every restaurant has to have apprenticeships, which is kind of cute and nice, but you can't force it if there is no one who wants it."

The full interview appears in the January issue of Good Housekeeping, which goes on sale on December 8.

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